Environment and Climate Change News

"Better Hydro" Shows That Hydropower Can Be Sustainable Too

(3BL Media/Justmeans) — Before they went belly up, the automotive brand Oldsmobile ran a series of TV ads saying, “this is not your father’s Oldsmobile,” trying to shake off the stodgy image that the brand had come to represent.

Cargill Signs CEO Letter in Support of Paris Climate Agreement

(3BL Media/Justmeans) — Cargill CEO Dave MacLennan has joined 29 other major company chief executives as a signatory to an open letter published in the Wall Street Journal, urging the Trump Administration to keep the US in the Paris Climate Agreement.

California Shows Why Trump is Wrong

(3BL Media/Justmeans) — President Donald Trump is at war with clean energy, immigration, taxes, and regulations, because, he says, these things represent a threat to our economy. He yearns for the days when oil companies, not tech firms, were the largest in the world, and when white people comprised an uncontested majority of the US population.

But his claim that re-establishing that order in a world that has totally changed will somehow make America great again, is misinformed. As Matthew Winkler brilliantly showed in Bloomberg View, he need only look at California to see the error of his ways. While actively embracing the things that Trump wants to get rid of: regulations, renewables, and immigrants, California, whose economy, at $2.3 trillion  (according to the WEF) falls, just behind the UK, as the world’s sixth largest, “is the chief reason America is the only developed economy to achieve record GDP growth since the financial crisis of 2008.”

The state’s economic growth is expected to continue to outpace the rest of the nation, through 2020.

And yet, California is not on the US Chamber of Commerce’s top ten list of business-friendly states with low taxes and regulations (which was topped by TN, SD, and WY). The Chamber’s idea of what drives a state’s economy seems to be in sync with the president’s, yet at least in the case of California, both deviate from reality. But then the Chamber, as witnessed by this report from the Cato Institute posted on their website, characterizes regulation as the antithesis of freedom (as opposed to protection) and ranks the US 22nd in the list of countries that are most free (2011 data), largely because of it.

BITC Supports Companies in their Efforts to Tackle Climate Change

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – Ten years ago, Business in the Community (BITC) hosted the Mayday Network launched by the Prince of Wales with an aim to address the global climate change challenge. Significant progress has been made in the ensuing 10 years with leading companies integrating environmental sustainability into business strategy.

“Mission Blue” Launched by National Geographic With Water Aid India And Bollywood

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – Globally, the current water crisis is critical. According to the UN, water use has grown at more than twice the rate of population increase in the last century. By 2025, an estimated 1.8 billion people will live in areas plagued by water shortage. While, right now, in India 76 million people don’t have access to clean drinking water, a problem that is going to escalate if no immediate action is taken.

Climate Whistleblower James Hansen Sides with Republicans on Carbon Plan

(3BL Media/Justmeans) — As hundreds of thousands marched last weekend, waving signs and urging their government representatives not to turn their backs on the urgent question of climate change, it felt to many that they were little more than waves bashing against unhearing, unfeeling rocky cliffs. Yet, the president and his cabinet cronies do not represent the entire Federal government, where many, even in his own party do not share his stance of willful oblivion. Indeed, unlike the president’s ill-informed followers, the majority of Americans are very concerned about the changing climate.

Given the divisive nature of our political landscape, the only hope for action seems to be in the form of a bi-partisan solution. The problem with Al Gore’s approach, said Carlos Curbelo,  a Republican Congressman from the low-lying Florida Keys was that Gore, “did all that without a Republican partner, so we got to a state of affairs where Republicans automatically oppose anything to do with the environment... there’s a lesson there. We need a proper, sober discussion on this issue.”

Curbelo is the co-chair of the House Climate Solutions Caucus, a group of 19 Democratic and 19 Republican lawmakers committed to looking for a solution that both parties can live with. Ted Deutsch, the Democratic co-chair, says, “If you want to join as a Democrat, you have to bring a Republican. It’s a Noah’s Ark approach, which is appropriate.”

One solution that the group may well get behind is the so-called carbon fee and dividend approach. This proposal has been backed by the environmentally- leaning Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL), but it also has some powerful support on the right as well. For starters, James Baker, Ronald Reagan’s Secretary of State, along with George W. Shultz and Henry Paulson—all former Republican cabinet members—support it.

Get Your Gear On For Earth Day 2017

(3BL Media/Justmeans) - All over the world people prepared for Earth Day celebrations, with actions to raise awareness of the need to preserve the planet against further degradation. Some companies also launched earth-friendly products to mark the day and also to donate to relevant charities.

Heineken Is Busy Reducing Carbon Emissions

(3BL/JustMeans) At a time when the U.S. government is backtracking on climate change action, some companies are committed to reducing its carbon emissions. Among them is Dutch beer brewer Heineken. 

Heineken set a goal to reduce its carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2020 in all of its global business operations in over 70 countries. To achieve that goal, the company set targets that include:

The Whole US Energy Picture in a Single Chart (Almost)

(3BL Media/Justmeans) — Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has released their annual US energy consumption chart (Click for larger image). Yes, it looks like spaghetti, but it contains a lot of useful information. It shows, on one page, how much energy we used in 2016, and specifically, what sources we got it from and what we used it for.

For starters, it says that we used 97.3 quads, which is short for quadrillion BTU’s. That’s a lot of energy. As Dave Roberts points out in Vox, that’s equivalent to 8 billion gallons of gasoline of 36 million metric tons of coal. It’s also the same amount that we used in 2011 and 2.2 quads more than we used in 2012.

However, in 2012 (Click for larger image), we used 17.4 quads of coal,26 quads of natural gas, 34.7 quads of petroleum, and 4.512 of renewables. Compare that with last year where we used 14.2 quads of coal, 28.5 quads of natural gas, 35.9 quads of petroleum, and 5.407 quads of renewables These four sources account for the bulk of the difference.

Perhaps the most startling information is found on the upper right hand side of the chart. That’s where it shows is the amounted of rejected, or wasted energy (an excellent measure of efficiency) and the amount of useful services received from all that energy.

Will Shifting Trends Rock the Solar Market?

(3Bl Media/Justmeans) — There appears to be upheaval in the US residential solar market.


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